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BBC Three

Television channel operated by the BBC / From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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BBC Three is a British free-to-air public broadcast television channel owned and operated by the BBC. It was first launched on 9 February 2003 with programmes targeting 16 to 34-year-olds, covering all genres including animation, comedy, current affairs, and drama series.[1] The television channel closed down in 2016 and was replaced by an online-only BBC Three streaming channel. After six years of being online, BBC Three returned to linear television on 1 February 2022.[2] It broadcasts every day from 19:00 to around 04:00, timesharing with CBBC (which starts at 07:00).

Quick facts: Country, Broadcast area, Network, Headquarter...
BBC Three
Logo used since 2022
CountryUnited Kingdom
Broadcast areaUnited Kingdom
Channel Islands
Isle of Man
NetworkBBC Television
HeadquartersLondon, England
Picture format1080i/1080p[lower-alpha 1] HDTV
(downscaled to 576i for the SDTV feed)
Sister channelsBBC One
BBC Four
BBC News
BBC Parliament
BBC Scotland
BBC Alba
Launched9 February 2003; 20 years ago (2003-02-09) (original)
4 March 2019; 4 years ago (2019-03-04) (block on BBC One)
1 February 2022; 19 months ago (2022-02-01) (relaunch)
ReplacedBBC Choice
Closed16 February 2016; 7 years ago (2016-02-16)(original)
31 January 2022; 19 months ago (2022-01-31) (block on BBC One)
WebsiteBBC Three
FreeviewChannel 23 (SD)
Channel 107 (HD; England & NI only)
Streaming media
BBC iPlayerWatch live (UK only)

BBC Three is the BBC's youth-orientated television channel,[3] its remit to provide "innovative programming" to a target audience of viewers between 16 and 34 years old, leveraging technology as well as new talent.[1] Unlike its commercial rivals, 90% of BBC Three's output originated from the United Kingdom. Notable exceptions were Family Guy and American Dad (both of them originating in the United States). It and sister channel BBC Four also carry occasional BBC Sport programming as an overflow for the BBC's other channels.

Following budget cuts at the BBC, the first iteration of BBC Three ceased operations on 16 February 2016, despite public opposition, moving to a BBC Three-branded streaming channel on the iPlayer.[4] It returned to broadcast television in the form of a late-night strand on BBC One on Monday to Wednesday nights since 4 March 2019. On 2 March 2021, the BBC confirmed that it planned to relaunch BBC Three's linear television channel in 2022 subject to regulatory approval,[5] which was approved in November that year.[6]